Japan may help with Metro II

The agreement on developing the industrial corridor is announced, repots Madhur Singh.

india Updated: Dec 15, 2006 02:10 IST

After announcing a Mumbai-Delhi industrial corridor, Japan is likely to extend its support to the second phase of the Delhi Metro project. This was revealed by Commerce Minister Kamal Nath while speaking to mediapersons on the second day of the Prime Minister's tour of Japan. With New Delhi slated to host the 2010 Commonwealth Games, the completion of the Delhi Metro is of prime concern.

The minister said the Mumbai-Delhi and Delhi-Howrah rail freight corridors and the Mumbai-Delhi industrial corridor could “change the face of the country”. The agreement on developing the industrial corridor was announced on Wednesday, and points to a move by Japan to secure sizeable returns from the freight corridor that it is helping to develop.

Among others, Nath has had meetings with the Japanese agriculture minister and chairperson of the Trade Policy Division in the last two days. He said talks with the agriculture minister led to an understanding to increase India’s export of marine products, fruits and vegetables to Japan. He said the two countries would also work together to take forward the stalled WTO talks.

Seeking a “quantum jump” in Japanese investment in India, the minister said mutual cooperation is aimed at making India the western hub of an East Asian market, from where Japan could not only address the Indian market but make India a hub to service third-party markets like the EU. He added that the Prime Minister held a meeting with an Indian business delegation, where the idea of an India-Japan Infrastructure Fund was mooted.

First Published: Dec 15, 2006 02:10 IST